Religious Studies 447: Encountering the World’s Religion

Course No: 8447
Subject: Religious Studies
Grade Level: 12
Course Length: Semester
Course Type: Elective
UC/CSU Subject Approval: G
Prerequisite: Religious Studies 101, 201, 300
Criteria for Enrollment: None
Fulfillments: Meets requirement for one of seven semesters of Religious Studies

The goal of this course is to introduce students to the major religious traditions of the world and uncover what they have to teach about ourselves and the challenge of living in the 21st century.  We will focus on the core teachings of these traditions and supplement our readings with various mediums, including religious art and film.   An introduction to the study of religion and an overview of the characteristics of primal religions will form the foundation of our studies. An in-depth analysis of the major “world religions,” including Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism, will follow. The common end of our diverse wisdom traditions is to transform our humanity into divine, awakened consciousness, enabling us to see the “divine in all things,” as St. Ignatius would say.  Our ultimate goal, then, will be to overcome fear and ignorance in order to become religiously literate and compassionate citizens, aware of a deep unity that underlies all of reality.